Make best use of India-Aus ECTA, Piyush Goyal tells industry

Make best use of India-Aus trade pact, Commerce Minister Goyal tells industry

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India’s Commerce and Industry Minister Piyush Goyal said on Tuesday 22 Nov that under the India-Australia Economic Cooperation and Trade Agreement (Ind-Aus ECTA), duties on 100 per cent tariff lines would be eliminated by Australia.

He was addressing a press conference after Ind-Aus ECTA was ratified by the Australian parliament.

The Minister said the agreement will come into force soon on a mutually convenient date once both the sides have completed their domestic processes.

As many as ten lakh (one million) jobs are estimated to be created in India as the result of ECTA, the Minister said.

He added that several sectors of the Indian economy, especially textiles, gems and jewellery and pharmaceuticals, were set to experience a boost, while opportunities would open up for investment and promotion of a variety of start-ups.

Goyal noted that the agreement would also open new opportunities for the service sector in India and would immensely benefit students by offering them an opportunity to work in Australia.

In fact, he informed that an annual visa quota of 1,800 is to be instituted for Indian yoga teachers and chefs.

ECTA provides for an institutional mechanism to encourage and improve trade between the two countries.

It is expected that with this agreement, the total bilateral trade will cross $45-50 billion in five years from the existing $31 billion.

India’s merchandise exports are likely to increase by $10 billion by 2026-27.

Similarly, it would provide enhanced job opportunities for Indians in Australia and increased remittance flows to India, the  Minister added.

Later, speaking at the Indian Steel Association’s ISA Steel Conclave at New Delhi, Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal urged the domestic steel industry to make the best use of the India-Australia Economic Cooperation & Trade Agreement (ECTA) Agreement and look at capturing new opportunities in Australia.

Piyush Goyal addressing the press (Source: Twitter)

“Developed countries recognise that the Indian economy will drive world growth,” he said.

He highlighted that post agreement with Australia, all of India’s steel exports to Australia will become duty free.

Goyal said the steel industry is a major stakeholder, contributing significantly to the export earnings.

He urged the steel producers to strive to develop Brand India and observed that the steel industry is the low hanging fruit in India’s integrated efforts to create global recognition of Indian products.

On withdrawal of export duty on steels and various steel products, Goyal explained that duty was imposed as a temporary measure to maintain price stability and maintain growth momentum in the country. He said these actions taken by the government have resulted in reining in inflation.

The minister appreciated the steel industry for understanding the problem and fully supporting the government’s action.

“The government’s effort has been to protect the Indian steel industry through ‘Melt and Pour’ provision in our FTAs,” he said, assuring that through this provision only, steel that is produced locally in those countries can be imported into India.

He added that Indian steel industry will continue to have an edge in the international market with the removal of duties on steel exports.

Noting that availability of coking coal is a major challenge for the steel industry, Goyal urged the industry to collaborate with eminent institutions and undertake research to find alternate solutions for this.

READ MORE: IndAus ECTA: new beginnings and aspirations 


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